CONvergence 2012 Highlights
There were a few low points at CONvergence 2012 but they aren’t even worth mentioning. Most of them had to do with last minute planning failures and my complete inability to sleep past 7:30, even when I went to sleep at 5:00 A.M.
So forget that stuff, here’s some of my best moments from CONvergence 2012 (more or less in chronological order):
Watching Fireworks from the 22nd Floor on the 4th of July. Top of the Sheraton, baby!
Pam Keesey was back at the convention after a long absence. I barely know her and yet I just love the heck out of her. We had a lovely long conversation on Sunday night. I hope she keeps coming back.
Fantastic Vilification Tennis posters by Molly and Nick.
I almost managed to convince Lyda Morehouse to sit enough panels to defeat Melissa Kaercher. If I’d been able to get the two set off in an arms race, I would have asked to be allowed to present the winner at Closing Ceremonies on Sunday. As it was, both added a panel over the weekend but Melissa won with twenty. Out of 34 possible time slots.
Suggesting that Batgirl should talk exactly like Batman in the Mark Time script and then getting assigned the role of Batgirl.
The first sight of Melissa’s costume for the Opening Ceremonies sketch. Terrific!
Technical glitches aside, the opening sketch went over very well and, as always, the sharp audience at CONvergence got every joke we wrote (and a few we didn’t realize we’d written) thanks in no small part to our cast. Thanks Jen, Joseph, Sara, Duck and Melissa! Also thanks to everyone who lent us props.
Huge cheer when I killed Jar-Jar. Huge laugh when I wiggled Padme’s big toe.
Joseph Scrimshaw, as always, completely knocking the Emperor out of the park.
Having a nice amount of time to relax between Opening and Smackdown.
Being an offensive racial stereotype for a swede of Die Hard. Just wait. It’s epic.
Bonnie Burton, Windy Bowlsby and Sharon Stiteler were great guest panelists for Smackdown. Loved having all of them. Sharon completely owned the panel this year and she clearly had a blast doing it.
Miss Piggy was the audience favorite and she won but we all know that the championship round was really between Leia and Ripley in the semi finals. If Piggy had faced Ripley, she would be forced out of an airlock for sure.
I totally got a googly eye from Bonnie Burton to put on my badge.
I actually got some serious party time in on Thursday night. Mostly hung out at Skepchick but at least I wasn’t hiding in my room.
Got some good ideas from Rebecca Watson for some comedy panels next year. It’ll be nice to add some new faces to that part of our programming.
I learned that Kammy from the Skepchicks had only been told I’m in Vilification Tennis a few days prior but she’s been a fan of the show for a decade. It’s the hat, my friends, it’s the hat.
Briefly talked with an inebriated John Kovalic late Thursday night. He noticed a poster and completely freaked out at the obscure geek music reference. He said he was going to steal the poster and he did. I took a picture.
The Aliens panel was a lot of fun. My co-panelists were very knowledgable and I got to complain about Ripley’s unbelievable loss on Smackdown.
We packed lunch meat and bread for sandwiches and that meant that every day of the convention, I actually had something besides chips and/or Skittles for lunch. It made a huge difference in my energy level.
I didn’t fall asleep on a Single panel! It might have been the sandwiches.
Scored some fantastic interviews for the Vilification Tennis podcast and, even better, my new portable recorder worked like a dream.
I was quite pleased with the Sinister interview panel. Cargill has a lot of good stories to tell about the experience and my job was to be a good moderator. It gave me some good ideas for attacking the moderator program in 2013.
I really enjoyed the comedy music panel. We finally managed to pick the right room size for our comic theory panel and we could easily have gone much longer given the great thoughts Jeremy and Courtney were adding to the conversation. Also, we wrote a song called “Dry Clean Only” that will never again see the light of day.
Somehow, in the midst of everything else, I managed to get the Kickstarter for the Vilification Tennis Home Game launched. On time.
Lots of complements on the use of the overflow room for Vilification Tennis. I’m going to toot my own horn and say that it was my idea. Because it was. Matt, Geoffrey and Erin made it work though so big kudos to them.
Oh, and by the way – here’s a video of the line of people waiting to see Vilification Tennis!
I pleased I didn’t chicken out and skip the pro gay marriage commercial at the end of the Vilification Tennis Radio script. I initially figured that CONvergence isn’t a place for a political ad and that I might actually offend someone. Then I realized that I didn’t give a crap if I offended someone who is against gay marriage. If you can’t stand up for what you believe in at a time like that, you don’t believe in it enough.
I loved to watch Mark realize just how awesome a CONvergence Vilification Tennis show can be. Doing Vil at CONvergence is like the Matrix. No-one can tell you what it is – you have to experience it for yourself.
How exciting was it to do a 9:30 AM panel on Saturday morning for a podcast that hadn’t yet aired it’s first episode and nearly fill the room? Our first two guests (Melissa Kaercher and Kammy Lyon) were a lot of fun and I just keep getting more and more excited for the project. I really hope Geeks Without God just takes off over the next few months because I love the idea and I love the two people who I’m working with.
Almost forgot about the “What Inspires you” panel and ran in 10 minutes late. I managed to get a few laughs out of it so I call it a wash.
I killed at Power Point Karaoke. When you have competitors like Tim Uren, Jen Scott and Joseph Scrimshaw, the pressure is on. And I killed it. Felt nice because if you’ve never done PP Karaoke, you have no idea how scary that shit is.
I also won because I showed nipple. That was a highlight for me. Probably not so much for anyone else.
I finally got to one of Joseph Scrimshaw’s OBSESSED podcasts. I liked the format he used with multiple guests on the stage at the same time – especially given that Paul Cornell and Bonnie Burton are such engaging personalities.
Geoffrey and I were able to knock out a jingle for Geeks Without God in about fifteen minutes. You hear that, folks in need of jingle writers? We boys got us some mad jingle writing skills!
The Dregs show fucking rocked. Like a wagon wheel. I can’t tell you how much I love performing with that band at CONvergence. Always such a great show. Even when Geoffrey is drunk.
I was very pleased that Rebecca Watson, Jason Thibeault and Stephanie Zvan were willing to share their time with us. It was great to walk out of the convention with four podcasts in the can.
Really enjoyed doing Iron Artist with Joseph Scrimshaw on Sunday morning. I say it a lot but I’m always grateful when very talented people are willing to work with me.
Love John Kovalic’s work on Iron Artist. He is such a funny man.
A little kid named Nolan stole the panel, though. Good for him.
I was once again given the opportunity to interview a guest of honor. I was able to interview Ruth Thompson, who is wonderfully talkative and barely required my presence.
Ruth has some great ideas for art programming next year. I hope that she follows through on them because art programming could use the kind of coordination she is suggesting.
Dead dog dinner at Olive Garden. It isn’t the restaurant that is important – it is the people you are eating with.
The number of people who told us they really want to be on the Geeks Without God podcast was remarkable. I keep saying it but I’m so happy that the idea seems to have captured the imagination of so many people.
I enjoyed the Closing Ceremony video. I was there for the original brainstorming of the idea and it was fun to see how the whole thing turned out.
It was great to hang with Rob Callahan for a bit at the dead dog. He’s good people.
Speaking of good people, I had a great rambling conversation about theology with Paul Cornell on Monday morning.
It was a great convention. As always. And it was thanks to the work of hundreds of people who don’t get paid a dime. Anyone else have memories they want to share?